I rarely pester people for sponsorship but I hope you won’t mind if I make an exception, because I’ve come up with a bright idea which could be a real charity goldmine.
Now I don’t know about you, but when people approach me for a spot of sponsorship I like to know they are going to suffer, at least a bit.
My views on charity marathons are a matter of record – stop nagging the rest of us for cash and just spend all the time you devote to training to working as a volunteer for the good cause of your choice, it’s much more cost-effective even if you don’t get a medal, a foil blanket and a free energy drink at the end of it – but I do expect a spot of sweat or suffering if I’m going to put my hand in my pocket.
Failing that, at least a bit of effort – organise a coffee morning, bake a few cakes, jump out of a plane. Come on, do something. Don’t take your clothes off, though, we’ve all had quite enough of that.
But it seems to be no longer necessary to have a challenge in mind if you want to raise money for charity. In fact, you can do it by doing nothing. You can even do it by doing less than nothing, and that doesn’t seem right.
It all started with Movember, which is now a fixture in the charity calendar.
This is when men up and down the country sport face fungus for the month of November. There’s no prize for the longest, the bushiest or the one with most spots of ginger in it – all they do is not shave. Impressed? Me neither.
Now I’ve become aware of something called Armpits4August, in which women who have apparently been fuming at being denied the chance to jump aboard the Movember bandwagon have set up their own alternative.
What do you have to do? Nothing. Just pretend you’re French for a month, say sayonara to smooth and be prepared to sprout.
I’m not an expert, but I don’t think many ladies are likely to produce such a tangle of armpit hair in a month that anyone will much notice unless it’s pointed out, but that’s their business.
So what’s my idea? Well, during September I am bravely committing not to trim, tweak or tease the hairs up my nose in any way.
It’s bold, I know. I am now of a certain age and the hair up there sprouts like cress on a flannel, but I’m prepared to give it a go.
I’ll ignore my ears for good measure, and any good cause which would like to benefit from my selfless efforts – hay fever sufferers? Handkerchiefs for the homeless? – is welcome to get in touch to discuss terms.
And if it takes off, then look out for October, when I will not be trimming my fingernails or paying any attention to making sure my monobrow does not achieve its stated aim of unity. After all, it’s the least I can do...